Cancer in Love

Cancer has a talent for intimacy and caring. When you're in love, you blithely ignore the most obvious flaws while homing in on your beloved's hidden potential. Loving, generous, sentimental, and maternal, you need to be with someone who shares your drive and your willingness to explore complex emotional issues. When you find such a person, you're totally supportive — even when the reverse isn't true. You also have a tendency to cling. The smothering mother is a Cancerian archetype for good reason: Sometimes you can't let go, not even a teensy bit.

1 Cancer + Cancer: You're intuitive and responsive, with plenty of energy and drive. Give it a go. But remember: Emotions run high during full Moons, and you both feel the pull. Examples: Rogers and Hammerstein, Barnum and Bailey, literary critics Diana and Lionel Trilling.

1 Cancer + Leo: The domineering Lion loves passion, adventure, and five-star hotels; the moody Crab wants a quieter life in a cozy cottage covered in vines. If Leo is willing to downsize expectations and Cancer is ready to stroke the Lion's fragile ego and take a chance, you can find common ground. Examples: Kevin Bacon (Cancer) and Kyra Sedgwick (Leo).

1 Cancer + Virgo: After you establish some trust, Cancer helps Virgo relax, and Virgo helps Cancer feel more secure. Problems arise with emotional issues. Supersensitive Cancer wants to discuss feelings, while critical Virgo prefers to skip the emotional stuff (unless it can be approached in a calm and systematic way) and make practical plans.

ii Cancer + Libra: Domestic Cancer and artistic Libra have a fabulous time decorating a house together. But Cancer's emotional sensitivities cause logical Libra to pull back. Like other signs that square each other, this isn't a simpatico pairing, though Libra's desire to be mated — combined with Cancer's need to nest — can be a mitigating factor.

i Cancer + Scorpio: You're both in touch with your feelings and in love with love. You probably have a deeply intuitive relationship, though problems may arise when Scorpio can't cope with the quick ebb and flow of Cancerian emotions. Scorpio feelings, while deep, change slowly; Cancer feelings are in constant flux. Examples: Tom Hanks (Cancer) and Rita Wilson (Scorpio), Princess Diana (Cancer) — or Camilla Parker-Bowles (Cancer) — and Prince Charles (Scorpio).

i Cancer + Sagittarius: Cancer wants to love, nourish, and possess;

Sagittarius can't be possessed. Though you may love each other intensely, you're completely different. Be warned. Examples: Frida Kahlo (Cancer) and Diego Rivera (Sagittarius), Tom Cruise (Cancer) and Katie Holmes (Sagittarius).

i Cancer + Capricorn: Like every pair of opposites, this one has pluses and minuses. Moody Cancer has an intuitive sense for how things ought to be done; sensible Capricorn prefers to go by the book. That's a small difference, given that Capricorn helps Cancer feel protected, Cancer helps Capricorn feel loved, and you share a reverence for tradition and family.

i Cancer + Aquarius: Warm, nurturing Cancer with cool, detached Aquarius? Not recommended, though some couples have defied the odds. Example: Nancy (Cancer) and Ronald Reagan (Aquarius).

i Cancer + Pisces: You're equally sensitive. Great feeling flows between you, your rhythms are similar, and you may even share a rare psychic connection. This is a perfect match, though Cancer, who loves to rescue, may find it difficult to overcome the famed Piscean ability to self-destruct. Examples: George Sand (Cancer) and Frederic Chopin (Pisces), Courtney Love (Cancer) and Kurt Cobain (Pisces).

If you fall for a Cancer, think roses, kisses, chocolate, and candlelight. A monogamist at heart, Cancer is tender and amorous — the real deal. Go to the ocean. Go dancing. Go anywhere by moonlight. Some signs do these things because they think they should. Cancerians do them because they respond to these traditional symbols — and because they crave intimacy. Three suggestions: Ask about your Crab's entire family tree; prove that you can cook; and be willing to discuss your emotions — in glorious detail.

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